There are certain recipes I wait to make until A is out of town, and this is one of them. Although he will eat both beans and kale in certain contexts, neither is on his list of favorite foods, and I can’t imagine him sitting down to a meal that consists of little else. Scaled down by half, this is perfect bachelor fare—cozy but more elegant than popcorn, a little indulgent but more nourishing than nachos, appropriate for any season, and easy enough to make that I have time afterward to catch up on all my favorite TV shows (Doctor Who! Orange Is the New Black! True Detective!), with leftovers stowed away for supper the next night.
I’d happily eat a big bowl of the garlicky, creamy, cheddar-spiked white bean mash alone, but topping it with lemony sautéed greens and a couple of runny eggs instantly equals complete meal. (I poach my eggs, rather than frying them as the original recipe at Serious Eats instructed…just personal preference. I’ve also used chives in place of the scallions on occasion, depending on what needs to be used up in the fridge.) I do miss A a lot when he’s gone, but dinners like this are the silver lining—or is that the cheesy lining?—to being home alone.
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium garlic cloves, finely minced (about 2 teaspoons)
2 (15-ounce) cans white beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup heavy cream
3 ounces grated sharp white cheddar cheese
2 ounces grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 cups finely shredded kale (I often use more)
2 teaspoons lemon juice
¼ cup finely sliced scallion whites and light greens
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add garlic and cook until aromatic, about 1 minute. Add beans, cream, and ½ cup water. Bring to a simmer, then mash beans lightly with a potato masher. If needed, add more water until a loose, porridge-like consistency is reached. Stir in cheddar and Parmesan cheese and half the scallions, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
- Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over high heat until shimmering. Add kale, season with salt and pepper, and cook, tossing and stirring frequently, until wilted and starting to crisp, about 4 minutes. Stir in lemon juice and transfer to a bowl.
- Fry or poach eggs.
- To serve, divide beans evenly among four bowls, then top each serving with sautéed kale and one or two eggs. Sprinkle with remaining scallions, grate some Parmesan over the top, and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
Time: 30 minutes
Leftover potential: OK, although the greens may discolor somewhat from the lemon juice; store beans and kale separately and don’t cook the eggs until ready to eat.